Cigar City Brewing Co. has established itself as a top tier craft brewery and has a devoted national following. As with any great brand, merchandise sales are sure to follow and Tampa-based Cigar City is no exception. While selling merchandise is nothing new for Cigar City, this is the first time they’ve taken the show on the road.
In the past, the Cigar City team utilized cash drawers and scanners during its big Hunahpu’s Day celebration in March, which it previously held in the brewery tasting room. Holding last year’s event in Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park in downtown Tampa drove the Cigar City team to roll out two new tools: 1) a dedicated mobile internet provider and 2) a HighJump Engage MPOS (a mobile point of sale app and system). Due to great planning and collaboration by the Cigar City and HighJump teams, the event came off without a hitch.
“Mobility was the number one criteria for us, since this was the first event we held off site,” said Alex Espinosa, office and web-store manager at Cigar City. “HighJump Engage held up from a speed perspective which was very much appreciated in this high-volume environment. All transactions and screens reacted great.”
By utilizing HighJump Engage MPOS, Cigar City was able to process 700 transactions in a four-hour time span or nearly three transactions per minute. Processing payments faster allowed them to sell out of all the merchandise they brought for the event.
Cigar City was able to easily load all the inventory data for wearable merchandise prior to the event into HighJump’s cloud-based Order Management System. Highjump Engage MPOS enabled Cigar City to quickly reconcile all their sales numbers in the system against their merchandise count. This functionality allowed them to quickly look at what sizes were still available, and which ones were running low, so they could set the proper expectations for customers.
HighJump Engage MPOS goes far beyond giving real time inventory counts. A huge benefit for Cigar City was not only the future planning of how much inventory they’ll need for next year’s event, but how easy it was for them to access that data and report on it. They now have access to hard data to help them forecast quantities for next year’s event.
Ease of use
In order to handle the kind of volume that Cigar City was looking for, they needed a system that was intuitive and easy to use for their employees. The HighJump Engage MPOS system helped them onboard and train new users in under 15 minutes. Within that amount of time, Cigar City employees were able operate efficiently in a high-volume environment.
With the success they had at Hunahpu’s Day, Cigar City Brewing will continue to utilize HighJump Engage MPOS any time they have an opportunity for offsite sales. This includes not only future offsite events, but any conferences and beer festivals where they’ll be selling merchandise as well.
Prior to founding Nexternal, Alex Gile worked as technology consultant for Accenture in San Francisco. He specialized in client/server CRM software at the time and could clearly see that the future of enterprise computing was in offering software as a service. In 1999, he co-founded Nexternal and began working day and night to develop the best eCommerce platform on the market. In January of 2000, Nexternal took its first client live and quickly grew to become a leading eCommerce solution. In May of 2015, Nexternal was acquired by to HighJump. Gile is now a senior vice president in the TrueCommerce division of HighJump.
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